Obama Orders Feds to Study Smart Gun Technology

The president asks government departments for tech-based recommendations to track lost or stolen guns and to prevent accidental gunfire.



President Barack Obama is flexing his executive muscle, ordering the federal government to study how smart guns could stem violence.

In a memorandum Monday, the president told the departments of Defense, Justice and Homeland Security to look into smart gun technology, such as fingerprint and radio-frequency identification. The goals are to track lost or stolen guns and to prevent accidental gunfire.

The agencies have 90 days to compile recommendations.

The Obama memo comes a month after a couple influenced by radical Islamic beliefs fatally shot 14 people in San Bernardino, California, raising concerns about public safety. Gun sales rose sharply amid fear of extremists after the December 2 shooting, the Obama administration said in a briefing over the weekend.

Obama plans to address gun violence at a nationally televised town hall meeting at George Mason University in Virginia on Thursday night. On Monday, the president consulted with Attorney General Loretta Lynch on which executive orders he could use for more gun restrictions.

“Developing and promoting technology that would help prevent these tragedies is an urgent priority,” Obama said in his memo.